Working From Home
Career Maker

Do’s and Don’ts of Working From Home

Me retire? Never I say! Why should I when I can do WHAT I do while working from home. Admittedly, there’s joy in not having to get dressed in my “big girl clothes” unless I’m meeting a client. The flexibility is freeing, and my creativity has been ignited once again.

That’s the good news. The bad news is that it’s easy to fall into the traps of overworking or getting distracted when working from home. I still need certain things and a certain environment to maintain productivity.

Here’s what I’ve found helpful to keep momentum moving when working from home:

1. Love the environment

While writing this article, my view is a beautiful backyard with tidy gardens and a pool—inviting creativity and serenity. Soft music is playing in the background. My desk is compact and well organized. Everything I need for efficiency is an arm’s length away – bookshelves, file draws, printer, and colorful pens. The walls are painted a soft sage green. The room is secluded enough from the rest of the house to allow privacy. Importantly, my chair is ergonomically designed to sustain sitting for long hours. How can you beat this?

2. Get to work and WORK

That means I take my job seriously. With coffee in hand, my morning starts at 8:30 and goes ‘til 4. For me, it’s easy to overwork – getting caught up in an exciting project or interesting research—all of MY CHOOSING. No longer do I have to take assignments unless I choose to. That’s huge and I’m grateful. Having said that, I set an alarm every hour to remind myself to take a break, stretch, grab another cup of coffee, or just pause and relax. Research tells us that the brain needs a break. So I take that seriously.

3. Be social

Stay connected in the virtual world. It’s easy to “see” my clients using apps like Zoom, GoToMeeting or Google hangouts. I have no hesitation using technology for virtual meetings, executive coaching, or chatting to catch up on what’s been happening. Making sure my network is working is just what I do naturally. I know the value of staying in touch and maintaining important relationships.

As a “people person,” I allow myself the fun of having lunch with a friend or family member once a week. Other than that, it’s business as usual – focused on business relationships.

This season of life is relevant and energizing knowing I can continue to bring value through my gifts and work. Let’s enjoy every moment.

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